Going from starting goalie for the Stanley Cup Finals runner-up team in last year's playoffs to designated reserve for a crucial Game 6 for this year's second-seeded Philadelphia Flyers could diminish any athletes confidence to perform.
This benching had a total opposite affect on Brian Broucher's ability to produce effective goal tending for the Flyers as they advanced to the second round of the playoffs after being down 3-2 in the series after five games.
Game 6 was on Apr. 24 and the Buffalo Sabres came out scorching looking to close out the Flyers and pull off the upset. They scored 3 goals in the first period against starting goalie Michael Leighton, who was eventually pulled for his terrible goal tending. Boucher entered as his replacement and helped save Philadelphia's postseason.
Boucher blocked 24 goal attempts and his teammates rewarded his efforts with a 5-4 comeback victory in overtime to tie the series at 3-3.
In Game 7, Boucher started and blocked 26 shots and only allowed two goals while the Flyers offense scorched the Sabres defense for five goals.
It looks like Philly will rely on Boucher for the rest of the postseason to protect their net. This team is hungry for another shot at becoming NHL champions, and they are improving their chances to make it to back-to-back finals as their weak link, goal tending is starting to become reliable.